- Cristi Wuenschel
Language & Literacy with Experience Early Learning
Updated: May 12, 2020
As an Experience Early Learning Blog Ambassador, we receive the Experience Early Learning preschool curriculum in exchange for sharing our honest and authentic stories resulting from our personal experiences. As always, our opinions on amazing things for children are 100% our own. Keep in mind that all preschoolers do things in their own time and on their own terms. What one is ready for, another might not be. Please use your best judgement when planning activities for your children.
As an Administrator, it’s been interesting watching the teachers and children. They seem to be more engaged with the addition of Experience Early Learning (formerly Mother Goose Time) this month!
I know that when new toys and books come into the room, they flock to them, but I also know that the teachers switch out toys and we have a good assortment to choose from.
The Language & Literacy activities that come with our preschool curriculum have been especially engaging to the children. That includes the books, magnetic storytelling pieces, and of course the puzzles.
We have a wide age range in our preschool room and the activities work well to accommodate the developmental levels.
One thing that parents notice when they walk into our center is the large variety of books that we have. You will just have to believe me when I say that they see only a portion of the books in the center!
I have always had a love of children’s books and that continues to this day. Maybe it’s because my sweet mother was a Children’s Librarian in Pittsburgh’s Carnegie South Side Branch Library.
I love the way that Experience Early Learning (formerly Mother Goose Time) has a book list outlined so that we can be sure to have the books that are needed for each theme.
For this first month, I had the majority of the books already, plus many more on the subject of Winter in the Woods. It made the preparation so much easier!
One of the activities that's included in the preschool curriculum this year, are "I Spy" sheets for each of the letters that we're learning.
When the children were working on the “I Spy” projects to search for the letters, I was impressed that the children of differing abilities were able to use the same page. Older children were able to find the letter P and the younger children could try and find the letters but were able to just color the pictures and still enjoy the project.
Even better was the fact that the magnifying glasses highlight the pictures on each sheet that start with the letter we're learning.
Not only did they have fun using the adorable magnifying glass to find what the correct letters and pictures, but they also offered a little bit of extra help for the kids who needed it.
The children loved the Hickory Dickory Dock activities as well. One morning I took several of the preschool children to the baby room and let them “read” the Hickory Dickory Dock poster to the babies! They were so excited to be able to “read” to them and the babies LOVED having their big friends show them the rhyme.
It was even one of the first things that they told their parents about as they came in the door that afternoon.
Years ago I bought the book Stranger in the Woods because I fell in love with the illustrations and story. I was very excited to have the teachers share it with the children during this theme. There is so much that can happen, but unfortunately we only had so much time.
We could probably do 2 or 3 weeks just using this book alone! I really like that the Experience Early Learning (formerly Mother Goose Time) Teacher Guides have us using each of the books multiple times.
In the past we have used a book just once and had an activity with it, but I really like that they can work on many different language and literacy skills each week including comparing books and making a choice as to which they liked the most.
For example, this week we're working with The Mitten, which is a favorite of mine, as well as Red Sled.
On Monday, the teachers and students discussed what they would do if they found something in a mitten and the worked together to name the animals on the cover of the book as well as trying to predict what the animals will do with the mitten.
The next day the preschoolers were encouraged to recall the animals in the story as well as how many fit in the mitten. They read the story once again and the students were so excited to have the opportunity to place a pompom (or another small object) in a mitten each time an animal in the book tried to fit inside.
For the last few days, the focus was on Red Sled.
Show the cover and invite children to point to the words "red" and "sled." What forest animals do you think will be in this story? What might they do with a red sled? Read the story aloud and encourage the children to repeat the sounds from the animals.
The preschoolers immediately picked up on the fact that the words rhyme.
Turn the pages of the book and encourage children to say what they see. Invite them to create more sounds for the animals to make while sledding down the hill.
Tomorrow the children will have the opportunity to work together to recall the animals in each story and answer the question, "Did you prefer the animals from The Mitten or Red Sled?
I loving seeing the creative ideas in the Teacher Guide for the preschoolers to share which of the books they liked the best. This week, they'll be casting their votes by placing a piece of yarn on their favorite of the two. That book will be the one the teachers read during circle time.
This preschool curriculum has been a wonderful addition to our center and both the children and teachers are really enjoying it.